What does the City of Friendswood hold its elections?
The City of Friendswood holds its elections on the first Saturday in May of every year. See §41.001(a)(1) & (2) TEC and §6.01 “City elections” Charter, City of Friendswood, Texas.
What are the City Council positions?
The City Council is comprised of a Mayor and six Councilmembers. The Mayor and each Councilmember shall be elected from the City at large, and each shall occupy a position on the City Council. Councilmember positions shall be numbered 1 through 6 consecutively.
The Mayor and each Councilmember shall be elected to serve for three-year terms, but no person shall be elected to serve on the City Council in any capacity for more than four three-year terms. The three-year terms of Office of Councilmembers and the Mayor shall be staggered, with the upcoming election and deadlines to file as follows
DEADLINE TO FILE
|Councilmember, Position 1|
|Councilmember, Position 2|
|Councilmember, Position 3|
|Councilmember, Position 4|
|Councilmember, Position 5|
|Councilmember, Position 6|
What are the qualifications for councilmembers?
A candidate for city council must meet all eligibility requirements of state law and the City’s Charter.
State law provides that a candidate for city council must:
- Be a United States citizen;
- Be 18 years of age or older on the first day of the term to be filled at the election or on the date of appointment, as applicable;
- Have not been determined by a final judgment of a court exercising probate jurisdiction to be:
- Totally mentally incapacitated; or
- Partially mentally incapacitated without the right to vote;
- Have not been finally convicted of a felony from which the person has not been pardoned or otherwise released from the resulting disabilities; and
- Be registered to vote in the territory the candidate seeks to represent by the filing deadline. See §141.001 TEC
The City’s Charter provides that a candidate must meet the requirements noted in Section 3.02 “Qualifications” and 6.02 “Filing for Public Office”:
Section 3.02 states in part that “the Mayor and each Councilmember shall meet the conditions of subsections 6.02(a), items (1), (2), and (3) while in office, and shall reside within the City while in office.
Section 6.02 states in part that “each candidate for an elective City Office shall meet the following qualifications:
(1) Shall be a qualified voter of the City.
(2) Shall have resided for at least 12 months preceding the election within the corporate limits of the City, including territory annexed prior to the filing deadline.
(3) Shall be at least 21 years of age.
(4) Shall meet the requirements for sponsors stipulated in subsection 6.02(b) below.”
What are the salaries of the mayor and councilmembers?
The members of the Friendswood City Council are volunteers and receive no compensation for their service.
When can I file for a place on the ballot?
Texas Election Code, Section 143.007(a) states that an application may not be filed earlier than the 30th day before the date of the filing deadline. Texas Election Code, Section 143.007(c) states that for an election to be held on a uniform election date, the day of the filing deadline is the 78th day before Election Day.
How do file for a place on the ballot?
The application for a place on the ballot can be accessed on the City’s website or a copy may be requested from the City Secretary. The application must be completed, notarized and filed with the City Secretary, at Friendswood City Hall, 910 S. Friendswood Drive, Friendswood, Texas 77546, Monday – Friday, during regular business hours. There is no fee associated with this process.
In addition to the Application for a Place on the Ballot, a candidate must also comply with Section 6.02(b) of the City Charter, which refers to a petition with at least 25-registered voters of the City sponsoring a candidate’s placement on the ballot, said petition must be filed at the time the candidate files his/her Application for a Place on the Ballot. A copy of this information and its related petition form can be accessed on the City’s website and/or requested from the City Secretary’s Office.
Lastly, per Section 6.02(d) a candidate must file with the City Secretary a Financial Public Disclosure Statement on or before the 21st day prior to election day. Failure to file this statement in compliance with Section 6.02(d) will invalidate the candidate’s filing for office. A copy of this information and its related form can be accessed on the City’s website and/or requested from the City Secretary’s Office.
Is there a candidate packet?
A candidate packet is made available at no cost to the public. A candidate may access the candidate packet on the City’s website, or he/she may request a copy of the packet, which will be provided in electronic format on a thumb drive. This packet will include all forms, applications, guides, and important dates that will help guide the candidates through the election process.
Do I need to appoint a campaign treasurer if I am not going to raise any money?
Yes. The law requires every candidate to file a campaign treasurer appointment, even if the candidate does not intend to raise or spend money. You are allowed to appoint yourself as your treasurer. A campaign treasurer appointment must be on file prior to the acceptance of contributions.
Where and when do I file my Campaign Contributions and Expenditure Report?
Campaign Contributions and Expenditure Report related to the City’s local elections must be filed with the City Secretary’s Office, City Hall, 910 S. Friendswood Drive, Friendswood, Texas, 77546. As a candidate for the May election, you must file your report on: (1) January 18th (Semiannual Report), (2) 30-days prior to the election, (3) 8-days prior to the election and (4) July 15th (Semiannual Report). The City Secretary cannot advise a candidate on the form and content of the report and can only receive said record. For more information related to the campaign finance reports, please visit the Texas Ethics Commission at wwwethics.state.tx.us.
Do I still have to file reports if I chose modified reporting on my treasurer appointment?
By selecting the modified reporting schedule, you are indicating that you plan to stay under the $500.00 threshold in either contributions or expenditures in connection with an election. The modified reporting schedule exempts you from filing 30-day and 8-day pre-election reports. If you have selected the modified reporting schedule, you must still report activity during the entire period you were a candidate, either on a semiannual report or on a final report.
What happens if I select modified reporting and then exceed $500?
If you select modified reporting and exceed $500.00 (in either contributions or expenditures in connection with an election) before the 30-day pre-election report is due, you must file required 30-day and 8-day pre-election reports. Keep in mind that unopposed candidates are not required to file these reports regardless of their level of activity. If you exceed the $500.00 threshold after the 30-day pre-election report is due, you must file an “exceeded $500 report” within 48 hours of exceeding the threshold, and if the threshold is exceeded before the 8-day pre-election report is due, you must file the 8-day pre-election report.
Who do I call if I have a complaint?
For any election related issue or complaint, please contact the City Secretary’s Office at (281) 996-3270 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.